Pete Karns

Induction Year: 
Competitive Skier

Pete Karns (1945 -     )

Pete Karns carved an impressive legacy of accomplishment at every level of skiing competition – juniors, collegiate, Olympic, Masters and coaching. A native of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Karns was a dominant competitor in slalom, downhill, cross-country and jumping in the region’s junior ranks starting in 1955. His triumphs in cross-country and Skimeister (4-way combined) events as a member of the University of Utah Ski Team between 1964 and 1967 earned him NCAA All-American honors in 1966. In 1967 he won the cross-country title in the 1967 Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Championships.

Pete placed first in the U.S. Biathlon National Championships in 1970 and 1972. In 1972 he was a member of the U.S. Olympic Biathlon Team that placed 6th in the Sapporo, Japan, Olympic Games, the highest ever by a U.S. team in that event up to that time. He was second in the 1980 U.S. Biathlon National Championships and second in the team relay in the 1985 World Masters Cross-Country Championships.

Karns served as a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee from 1973 to 1976, the same years he coached the U.S. Biathlon Team. He coached the U.S. Olympic Biathlon Team in 1976 and was Chief of Timing for Biathlon during the 1980 Olympic Winter Games in Lake Placid, New York. During the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City, Karns served as Chief of Forerunners for biathlon events.